With more and more people relying on wood to heat there homes, they are wanting to learn more about the inner workings of wood. With one of the main questions being how much does a cord of wood weigh? A big part of the reason people want to know this is usually due to how many trips will it take to move a cord of wood. Or if where they plan on storing there wood will hold the weight of the cord, which is a genuine concern since cords of wood are heavy.
Quick Links To Info On This Page
- 1 How Do You Measure Firewood?
- 2 How Much Does A Cord Of Wood Weigh?
- 3 How Much Does A Cord Of Oak Wood Weigh?
- 4 How Much Does A Cord Of Pine Wood Weigh?
- 5 How Much Do The More Common Woods Weigh In A Cord?
- 6 How Much Does A Cord Of Wood Cost?
- 7 My Final Thoughts
How Do You Measure Firewood?
This is something that if you plan on using firewood, you should learn. The correct terms for how you measure firewood is in cords, so one or two cords of wood, but there is also a face cord which is measured differently. With a normal cord of wood it is 4 feet high, 8 feet wide, and 4 feet deep which will be 128 cubic feet. Usually this is stacked in what is called a rick of wood, which is 4 x 4 x 8 feet. So if you hear people referring to a rick of wood, that is what it means.
Then you have the other measurement which is called a face cord. A fact cord of wood is a single stack that is 4 feet high and 8 feet wide, and roughly between 12 to 18 inches deep. So as you can tell it is stacked very differently compared to the normal cord of wood, making it generally weigh a lot less. So these are the two units of measurement that you need to keep in mind, when measuring wood.
How Much Does A Cord Of Wood Weigh?
This is one of the more difficult questions to answer since there is never an exact weight with many factors, that need to be added in. For example something like a Basswood (linden) will roughly be about 1990 lbs when dry in a cord, but if it is still green it can weigh up to 4410 lbs. So while you can’t get an exact number, you can get a bit of an idea which will help in your decision making. This is definitely frustrating since I can’t just tell you a number, so if you’re planning to move a cord of wood in your pick up. I would highly recommend doing it in multiple trips.
While I can’t give you an exact number I do have estimations which are as close to an average on some of the more popular firewood in the USA. Which I hope will be able to help you in your search, but if I haven’t listed one that you use. Feel free to leave a comment and I might be able to help or point you in the direction of someone who does.
How Much Does A Cord Of Oak Wood Weigh?
Oak is one of the most common types of wood in the world, and not just the USA. This is for good reason, it is a very versatile wood that burns well and not to difficult to split. It also has quite a nice smell when it burns, if that is important to you. There are four types that most people will use which are Bur, Red, Pin, and White oak.
The Estimations For Oak Wood
- Bur Oak – When it is still green it roughly weighs around 4970 lbs, which will definitely mean several trips in your pick up. When it is dry it roughly weighs around 3770 lbs, which again means several trips which you will notice is a common theme with this.
- Red And Pin Oak – If you’re wondering why this are together, it is because they belong in the same group. They’re actually the lightest out of the oaks on this list coming in at 4890lbs when green. Then when it has been dried out properly, it roughly weighs about 3530lbs. So yet again the poor pick up will be making more trips.
- White Oak – White oak is easily the heaviest of the oaks, weighing roughly 500lbs more then the Bur oak. It weighs roughly about 5580lbs when it is green, which will make short work out of what you’re trying to carry it with. Even when it is dry it still will weigh over 4000lbs, being roughly around 4210lbs.
My Thoughts On Oak
While I really like oak in generally, and is a wood I commonly use in my own home. It can be a pain when it comes to transporting a lot of it, especially when my pick up will only allow me to carry roughly 2000lbs which is on the higher side then most peoples. But apart from the weight, oak is a great type of wood to use and highly recommend.
How Much Does A Cord Of Pine Wood Weigh?
While I personally not a big fan of using Pine wood to burn, since it is a softwood which doesn’t burn as well as a hardwood like the Oaks above. It is still a common type of wood that is used for burning in the USA, so I had to include it on this list to help as many people as possible. There are three types of pine that I have been asked about the most, and they are. Eastern White, Jack, and Ponderosa which all weigh about the same when dry which surprised me.
The Estimations For Pine Wood
- Eastern White Pine – The Eastern White Pine is the baby of the group, if you can call over 2000lbs a baby! When it is green it roughly weighs around 2790lbs which is the lightest on this entire list. When it’s dry it sheds roughly 500lbs, weighing around 2255lbs overall. Thankfully this will cut how many trips you will have to do!
- Jack Pine – We are back over the 3000lbs mark with this wood, with it being around 3205lbs from my estimations. It does shed a fair bit of weight when it has been dried out fully, coming close to the 2493lb mark.
- Ponderosa Pine – The thing with Ponderosa Pine is that it holds more water then most Pine wood. So it weighs more then the others when wet, but when dry it is slightly lighter then the Jack. Being roughly around 3610 lbs when green, and 2340lbs when dry. This is a big surprise to me, but does make life a little easier when it comes to transporting dry.
My Thoughts On Pine
As I stated Pine isn’t for me, but I understand why people use it. It is a very common wood, that is lighter then other woods. Which also makes it easier to split, but it doesn’t burn as well. It can be cheaper as well because of it being a softwood, so if you’re on a budget and can’t cut it yourself. I can get why people need to use pine.
How Much Do The More Common Woods Weigh In A Cord?
While I could list quiet a few more types of wood, I feel focusing on the more common will allow me to help more people, without being completely overwhelming. This may sound strange to some, but I have met many beginner who have said to much info is overwhelming. I like to try and keep as many people in mind as possible.
So on this list I will go over the more common types such as Maple, Cherry, Birch, Elm, Hickory, and Douglas Fir. While the first few are a bit more understandable, the Douglas Fir will catch your eye if you know a thing of too about wood. It’s a lot like pine as in it’s a softwood so it doesn’t burn as well as the others. But it still is quite a popular wood to use, so i wanted to include it on the list.
The Estimations For The More Common Types Of Wood
- Silver Maple – Silver Maple is a very good wood especially when it comes to burning, it has a low amount of smoke, but decent heat. But in terms of weight it isn’t to bad really, roughly weighing about 3910 lbs when green. It also holds a lot of water when it’s green and drops quite a bit when dried, coming in close to 2760lbs.
- Other Maple – I made Silver separately since it is a bit different to other maples, while the others are quite similar so they’re together. When they are green they weigh an impressive 4690lbs, and when dried out it is closer to 3685lbs.
- Black Cherry – Blach Cherry trees are great for there coals when burning making them quite popular as well. When it comes to it’s unseasoned weight, it roughly comes in at 3700lbs. After you dry it, it loses roughly 700lbs coming in at 2930lbs.
- Paper Birch – Paper Birch is the more popular type of Birch tree for people to burn, because it has some decent heat, and smells quite nice. But in terms of weight it’s pretty heavy, weighing 4315lbs when green. Then after it has been seasoned properly it comes in around the 3000lbs mark.
- Red Elm – While people burn American, and Siberian Elm. I believe the Red is more common and the better wood to burn if you are choosing an Elm. It’s pretty heavy wood when green, which is about 4805lbs. Then drops well over 1500lbs when you dry it out, coming in at 3120lbs.
- Bitternut Hickory – Hickory is a heavy hardwood, which makes it difficult to split, but makes it excellent to burn. With the Bitternut coming in at 5040lbs when green, and roughly 3840lbs when dry.
- Shagbark Hickory – The Shagbark Hickory is just slightly heavier then its Bitternut counterpart, coming in roughly at 5110lbs when green. After you have dried it out it comes down quite a bit as well, being closer to 3957lbs.
- Douglas Fir – As I said before Douglas Fir is a softwood, so it’s not the best for burning. Which you will notice it is similar to the Pines in weight. With a green cord of Douglas Fir being around 3324lbs, and after drying out being 2975lbs.
My Thoughts On The The Common Types Of Wood
Out of the common types of wood I chose there is some pretty obvious similarities between them. If you know about burning wood, you will know that hardwood is better for burning. But since it’s harder and more dense means it weighs more. So out of the more common types there I find it very hard to pass up the Hickory. It’s a reliable hardwood, that may difficult to split if you don’t have the right tools.
How Much Does A Cord Of Wood Cost?
This is another one of those questions that is difficult to answer since it varies so much, I know people online will say generally between $120 to $200. But I don’t think you can say that with such a certainty, and think the only way to find out how much a cord of wood costs is by actually going out and checking places. The best I can do is offer a few tips to try and get the best prices, trying to ensure you don’t get ripped off.
If you have a friend who also uses wood for heating etc, they’re generally a good source of information on where to buy cords from. If you go to buy a cord of wood I highly recommend seeing it for yourself in person, and not just trust a photo. There is no guarantee in the quality of the wood from a photo. Some places online will sell you firewood and deliver it for you, but this will cost more since you will have to pay a delivery fee etc.
You should always make sure to shop around, this should go without saying but you never know. Sometimes the brain does forget the simple things. One thing that is often overlooked when buying a cord of wood, is people don’t check if it will fit in there appliance. This is a really annoying issue, since it means you’ll have to split the wood again.
I would highly recommend not buying wood in the winter, since that is when it is the most expensive. I would recommend buying it earlier and stacking it yourself to let it season more. Remember if you’re storing it outside you should have it covered by a tarp. Try and make sure the wood is clean when you buy it. Having it be covered in mud is something you just don’t want. While a lot of these are commonsense it is always worth remembering and double checking.
My Final Thoughts
I’m frustrated I can’t just give you the answer for how much a cord of wood weighs, but there isn’t a lot you can do about it. There are so many variables that make it next to impossible to know for sure. So hopefully the estimations I have done, will help you in your endeavor in determining how many trips you will need to do. Or if this was just a simple curiosity of yours, hopefully I was able to help you.